27 December 2022
Tuulikki Bartosik will be releasing an original Album titled “Playscapes” in the latter month of January 2023
Tuulikki Bartosik is a well-known accordionist, composer, and experimenter of traditional and classical music with degrees from her native Estonia, her adopted country of Sweden, and Finland. Her work has evolved into something more daring, branching out from its roots to investigate the potential of fusing her virtuoso playing with vocals, effects, and music software. The teenage heavy metal fan, the classical musician, and the traditional music are all condensed into something wholly unique by Tuulikki Bartosik.
There is a similarity between Iceland’s Lafur Arnalds‘ minimalism and the minimalism of masters like Philips Glass and Terry Riley, all of whom create a lot out of little. But Bartosik‘s creations are her own, crossing boundaries and taking an external perspective. Tuulikki Bartosik has performed with renowned musicians from Great Britain, Scandinavia, and Japan during her extensive tours of Europe and Asia. These musicians include the Swedish saxophonist Jonas Knutsson, the Finnish pianist Timo Alakotila, the English musicians Hannah James and Dylan Fowler, the Welsh accordionist Kanako Kato, and the Japanese saw player Hajime Sakita.
The musician Tuulikki Bartosik‘s upcoming album, “Playscapes,” which is scheduled to be released in January 2023, has a more global perspective than her previous work and transports the listener on sonic journeys to the various locations around the world that have profoundly influenced the musician. It is an album that travels from Finland to England and Japan, as well as from Estonia to Sweden. changing the landscapes, transforming the images in Bartosik’s head into sensations she can feel with her fingertips. It also marks a huge sonic charge for Bartosik, exploring the use of pedals with her accordion.
According to Tuulikki Bartosik, pedals have potential because the accordion wasn’t able to meet her need for sounds, so she tried a pedal. She spent a year studying them, learning how to use them and what they were capable of. She is fascinated by death metal low bass and beats, and she realized she could only create those sounds with an accordion with assistance. Getting the full richness of the sound is more important than switching to something electronic, she claims.
Tuulikki Bartosik is one of the few female accordionists in the world who writes and produces her own music and pursues an international career with it. The album is a unique recording with a free-bass accordion, kantele, voice, and electronics. You could say that the songs on Her new album “Playscapes” are a cross between electronic music by Patrick Wolf and Olafur Arnalds. On January 14, 2023, in Estonia and Sweden, a limited edition vinyl version of “Playscapes” will be released, and digitally worldwide on the 21st of January 2023 by Tuulikki‘s own label ‘Efni Records’. On January 14th, 2023, Fotografiska will host the first release concert in Tallinn, Estonia. The three previously released singles from the album were positively received by international music critics and were chosen as one of the best songs of the week on Estonian Public Broadcasting’s cultural portal.
2. 響き Hibiki.
3. Reveal: Pettäsaamislugu.
9. Helsinki: Aatos.
12. Livland: Suusilm.
“Playscapes”, is the third solo album from musician and composer Tuulikki Bartosik. What Bartosik has produced is a record of delicately layered and textured music, with her playing accordion, Estonian zither, piano, harmonium, and singing, as well as adding sounds she’s recorded all over the world to enhance the local feel of the tracks. Music that is truly impressionistic. For instance, in “London,” a track in the album, she records her experiences while riding the Underground at four in the morning, even with the station announcements. They all contribute to the melodies’ sense of identity and grounding. Surprisingly, for something so intricate, the music wasn’t meticulously planned out in advance.
When Tuulikki Bartosik began the album in her own studio, only the first song, “Robertsfors,” had been arranged. It featured the first Swedish lyrics she had ever written and sung, a realization that Sweden and its culture had become an integral part of her identity. Bartosik started that process in February of last year, moved to the Estonian Radio studios in July, and meticulously created everything as she went. She was confident that “Playscapes” would be finished in time for Christmas.
The mixing process, collaboration with Siim Mäesalu, and a few minor overdubs followed. The entire process took about a year from beginning to end. Tuulikki Bartosik says, “I didn’t want the album to sound like a live concert in the studio”. You mainly don’t produce an album in traditional music; you just mix and master it nicely. In order for this mix to have real power, She wanted to give it some thought. Along with Mäesalu, Bartosik also connected with Sander Mölder, a similarly accomplished professional. He contributed several instruments and co-produced “Playscapes.” Most importantly, he started working closely with Tuulikki Bartosik as a collaborator on every facet of the music.
Both Tuulliki Bartosik and Sander have sound libraries of their own, so it was like a team effort! Bartosik wasn’t happy with the kick sound, so they redid some of the pieces, particularly “London.” They frequently used graphics so they could see visual representations of the sound. Bartosik picked up a lot from Siim and Sander. It’s ironic, really, because when she was ten years old, she had a dream of becoming a sound engineer, a field back then in which no women were employed.
The accordion as an instrument explores new ground in “Playscapes.” It is revolutionary in that regard and redefines Tuulikki Bartosik as a creative composer and instrumentalist. This album was recorded in an Estonian Radio studio, Tuulikkis‘ home studio, and Rävala 8 studio. Sander Mölder and Tuulikki Bartosik produced the work and mixing and mastering were done by Siim Mäesalu.
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